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Chapter 122:13
Between the 17th of Tammuz and Tisha B'av

13. When Rosh Chodesh Av falls on a Friday, a person who is accustomed to washing with hot water every Friday (in honor of Shabbos) may also wash with hot water on that day. On the Friday before [the Shabbos preceding Tish'ah B'av,] "Erev Shabbos Chazon," even a person who usually washes [with hot water] on Friday is forbidden to wash [his entire body] with hot water (1). He may, however, wash his face, hands, and feet (2).

Similarly, a person who washes his hair [with hot water] every Friday may do so [on Erev Shabbos Chazon]. He is not allowed to use soap or lye (3). A person who immerses himself [in the mikveh] every Erev Shabbos, may immerse himself in an unheated [mikveh] on Erev Shabbos Chazon as well. Nevertheless, if a person is sometimes lax about observing this custom (4), he is forbidden to immerse [on Erev Shabbos Chazon].


(1) Even cold water may not be used on Erev Shabbos Chazon to wash one's entire body (Mishna Berura 551:95).

(2) Even with hot water, providing he is accustomed to do so every Erev Shabbos (Ibid. 97). There are recent authorities who rule that since nowadays we are accustomed to bathe more frequently, one may bathe normally (that is, wash the entire body) even with hot water on Erev Shabbos Chazon, if he is accustomed to do so on every Erev Shabbos.

(3) According to the authorities mentioned in note (2) who permit regular bathing in hot water on Erev Shabbos Chazon, one may use soap and shampoo on one's hair as well, provided that one is accustomed to do so every Erev Shabbos (Rav Shimon Eider: "Summary of the Halachos of the Three Weeks"). As we noted in HY 122:12, soap and shampoo may be used during the rest of the nine days, only when they are essential for removing dirt and perspiration.

(4) Due to business commitments or other time constraints.

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